Minimising Construction Impact

Our Construction Environmental Management Framework ensures that all environmental impacts during construction are managed effectively to the standards set out in our planning permission. Outlined below are a wide range of measures we that we have delivered recently.

Wildlife and ecology

Most of the possible impacts on wildlife and ecology occur during construction. To minimise them we will:

  • Retain habitats wherever possible to reduce the impact on species and wildlife
  • Carry out protected species surveys and re-home wildlife as necessary
  • Implement the agreed Protected Species Management Plan
  • Position construction lighting away from sensitive ecological receptors. Lighting will be designed using guidance from the Bat Conservation Trust
  • Not restrict movement along bodies of water
  • Adopt a precautionary method of working across all of our sites to minimise the risk of harm to wildlife. We will actively encourage reptiles to move into better habitats by removing debris and cutting vegetation that could provide shelter

Lighting

Preserving the dark skies that characterise parts of the North York Moors has been a major consideration in the development of our plans. To reduce the impact of light on the local environment, we will:

  • Strictly control working hours for surface operations during the construction period
  • Enclose shafts and winding towers to enable 24 hour underground operations without light spill at the surface
  • Keep lighting at the mine to a minimum during operations and add additional shielding by creating screening mounds
  • Install shutters on our welfare building, keep car park lighting to a minimum and enclose this area with an environmental barrier to contain light from car headlights
  • Keep lighting at the Wilton materials handling facility to a safe minimum and contain our main operations within buildings

Noise and vibration

Noise from the type of modern mine we are going to build will be minimised through being located underground. To keep construction noise to a minimum, we will:

  • Ensure that full noise control measures within the Construction Environmental Management Plan and Noise and Vibration Management Plan are delivered
  • Provide notification in advance of blasting for shaft construction

Air quality

We have undertaken extensive air quality monitoring around all our proposed sites. To minimise our potential impact on air quality, we will:

  • Ensure that full dust control measures within the Construction Environmental Management Plan are implemented
  • Restrict vehicle movements and enforce a Travel Plan which sets out approved routes for contractors
  • Restrict the number of parking spaces at the mine site
  • Comply fully with Institute of Air Quality Management guidance

Hydrology

To protect existing watercourses and minimise flood risk or surface run off, we will:

  • Implement a Surface Water Drainage Strategy in line with the principles set out in our planning application
  • Use proven Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS)
  • Apply silt traps, check dams and apply level one water treatment as part of the SuDS
  • Obtain approval from the regulator for our construction methods to ensure existing watercourses are fully protected
  • Operate to the highest standards of site safety and good practice construction methods
  • Monitor surface water flows and quality and report on a monthly basis

Traffic and transport

Working with the community and the local authority to reduce the impact of our work on local roads – particularly during construction – is a priority. To keep the impact to a minimum we will:

  • Implement and enforce a Travel Plan that restricts our vehicle movements and sets out approved routes for contractors
  • Restrict the number of parking spaces at the mine site
  • Operate a Park and Ride scheme for those working at the mine to reduce the number of individual vehicles going to and from the site
  • Restrict parking at the site to those car sharing with at least two other employees

Visual and landscape

Locations for both the mine and access buildings have been selected to ensure that their visual impact is kept to a minimum. Although all of our sites already benefit from existing screening, to enhance this further we will:

  • Provide new landscaping to blend into the surrounding area
  • Use the material extracted from the mine as we build it to provide landscaped features to further screen the mine and access buildings
  • Implement measures for the long-term management of the woodlands at the mine site

CONSTRUCTION CARBON FOOTPRINT

The Company is always looking at ways to be more energy effi cient during the intensive construction period. Within the constraints of a large construction project, the Company is working, together with its contractors, to proactively reduce carbon emissions.

In line with regulatory requirements, the Company’s Greenhouse Gas (GHG) performance is calculated using the latest Greenhouse Gas Protocol and set out in the table below.

This includes direct GHG emissions from the combustion of fuels (Scope 1) and indirect GHG emissions from the consumption of purchased electricity, steam or other sources of energy (Scope 2).

As reporting procedures mature, the Company will look to include other indirect GHG emissions (Scope 3). In 2017 emissions totalled 2,063 tonnes of CO2e.

tCO2e
Scope 1 emissions1,943
Scope 2 emissions120
Gross carbon emissions2,063
Intensity metric: per £10m spend129

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